Statement: One year after Uri, Landon offers “stark reminder” of energy vulnerabilities

Media Contacts
Emma Searson

Josh Chetwynd

Concerns about a repeat of the February 2021 Texas power crisis resurface as the nation faces another major winter storm

Environment America

BOSTON — Almost one year after Winter Storm Uri struck Texas and brought on a debilitating deep freeze, Winter Storm Landon is making its way across the United States and bringing back concerns about the reliability of our energy system. More than 50,000 Texans lacked power on Thursday due to downed power lines and other grid problems, and continued freezing conditions will remain a challenge in Texas and beyond through the weekend. As the storm moves across the Midwest and Northeast, power outages are a growing concern in states such as Tennessee, Ohio and New York as well. More than 300,000 were without power as of Friday morning. 

In February 2021, Winter Storm Uri caused millions in Texas to lose their electricity and led to the tragic deaths of at least 246 people. Landon has led to renewed fears of widespread failures in the interdependent gas and electricity systems that contributed to last year’s blackouts and lack of home heating. Texas officials have acknowledged that the state’s power grid remains vulnerable to extreme winter weather. 

Environment America and Environment Texas created a resource guide that includes further details on the anniversary of the Texas freeze and power crisis.

In response, Environment America 100% Renewable Campaign Director Emma Searson issued the following statement:

“This week’s storm offers yet another stark reminder of just how vulnerable America’s energy system is. Last year, the fragility of the Texas power grid led to hundreds of deaths and billions of dollars in damages. With the memory of that disaster front of mind this month, it’s no wonder that Texans and New Yorkers alike are wringing their hands with worry as Landon heads their way.

“Winter storms aren’t uncommon, and they’ll pop up more and more as our climate continues to change. They shouldn’t cause life-threatening energy crises, and they don’t have to. We can and should take steps to build a more resilient power grid  – one that is less reliant on resources like gas that are prone to fail in the cold and makes better use of energy efficiency measures and clean, local energy resources like rooftop solar and storage. Otherwise, communities across the country will still be at risk every time nature throws a big winter storm their way.”